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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 13 Hansard (25 November) . . Page.. 4611 ..

MR STANHOPE (continuing):

These are aspects of the strategy that we are working on. As I say, we continue to work on each of these issues. We have in place a range of other very significant planning and strategic planning work undertaken through the spatial plan and social plan which will of course, in a broad fashion, address each of these major priorities of this government.

As I say, the government is developing a whole-of-government, mature-age employment strategy and plan. We are developing a whole range of other very significant strategic plans in relation to areas of interest to an ageing population around employment, training and the need for appropriate housing accommodation.

We are taking a strategic and proactive approach to the issues of an ageing population. I think it is the first time that any government in the ACT has done it in a systematic and strategic way. I am very pleased with the progress that we have made. The plans and strategies that we are developing will respond to the challenges and will ensure that our aim in creating an inclusive society, one where older people feel safe and valued, where services are available to meet their needs, are genuinely implemented.

The increasing population of aged Canberrans is in good hands with this government, Mr Speaker. We are taking, as I say, a proactive approach to the full range of issues that confront our ageing community as we develop strategic directions that will ensure the needs of the aged are catered for, including access to the highest quality of aged care and aged-care facilities in the ACT now and well into the future.

MS TUCKER (3.54): Mr Cornwell has brought up an important matter for debate today as a matter of public importance. I intend to focus more generally on the state of aged care, which is referred to in Mr Cornwell's matter of public importance. It is interesting because I have quite a number of documents in front of me here that I will read to refresh my memory on exactly what has been going on with aged care.

I recently went to the launch of the strategic plan of the ACT Ministerial Advisory Council on Ageing. That strategic plan is from 2003 to 2005. At the beginning of that document, in the introduction, it is stated:

The work of the council complements the work of the ACT Ministerial Advisory Council on Aged Care. Cross representation between the two councils ensures a comprehensive platform of strategic advice to the government...

Mr Stanhope, in the foreword to the plan, states:

As part of the government's commitments in the Plan for Older Canberrans, the ACT Ministerial Advisory Council on Ageing was established.

I was not familiar with the government's plan for older Canberrans. I could not recall it exactly. I have been looking for it. I have talked to the Chief Minister's Office and they could not find it either. What was said on behalf of the government cannot represent the position of the government unless there is a plan, but I cannot find it. I cannot find it on the web page either.

There is the ACT Labor policy-ACT Labor's plan for older Canberrans. If that is what Mr Stanhope is referring to, I do not think it is correct to call it a government document, unless it has been adopted as a government document, which I was not aware of. But if

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